July 2021: Staff Favorites, New for Kids & Teens, In-Person Author Readings, and More!

 
July 2021: Staff Favorites, New for Kids & Teens, In-Person Author Readings, and More!
 
 
Read two new Staff Reviews, browse our Staff Favorites table, and see what's new for Kids & Teens. Plus, in-person Author Readings return to Annie Bloom's! But first....
 
New Releases
Vesper Flights (Paperback)
by Helen MacDonald
Out Now!
 
In Vesper Flights Helen Macdonald brings together a collection of her best loved essays, along with new pieces on topics ranging from nostalgia for a vanishing countryside to the tribulations of farming ostriches to her own private vespers while trying to fall asleep. Meditating on notions of captivity and freedom, immigration and flight, Helen invites us into her most intimate experiences: observing the massive migration of songbirds from the top of the Empire State Building, watching tens of thousands of cranes in Hungary, seeking the last golden orioles in Suffolk's poplar forests. She writes with heart-tugging clarity about wild boar, swifts, mushroom hunting, migraines, the strangeness of birds' nests, and the unexpected guidance and comfort we find when watching wildlife. By one of this century's most important and insightful nature writers, Vesper Flights is a captivating and foundational book about observation, fascination, time, memory, love and loss and how we make sense of the world around us.
by Matt Bell
Out Now!
 
In eighteenth-century Ohio, two brothers travel into the wooded frontier, planting apple orchards from which they plan to profit in the years to come. As they remake the wilderness in their own image, planning for a future of settlement and civilization, the long-held bonds and secrets between the two will be tested, fractured and broken—and possibly healed. Fifty years from now, in the second half of the twenty-first century, climate change has ravaged the Earth. Having invested early in genetic engineering and food science, one company now owns all the world's resources. But a growing resistance is working to redistribute both land and power—and in a pivotal moment for the future of humanity, one of the company's original founders will return to headquarters, intending to destroy what he helped build. A thousand years in the future, North America is covered by a massive sheet of ice. One lonely sentient being inhabits a tech station on top of the glacier—and in a daring and seemingly impossible quest, sets out to follow a homing beacon across the continent in the hopes of discovering the last remnant of civilization. Part speculative epic, part tech thriller, part reinvented fairy tale, Appleseed is an unforgettable meditation on climate change; corporate, civic, and familial responsibility; manifest destiny; and the myths and legends that sustain us all.
by Daniel Silva
Out Now!
 
Once Russia's richest man, Viktor Orlov now resides in splendid exile in London, where he has waged a tireless crusade against the authoritarian kleptocrats who have seized control of the Kremlin. His mansion is heavily protected. Yet somehow, in the midst of a global pandemic, Russia's vengeful president finally manages to cross Orlov's name off his kill list. Gabriel Allon owes his very life to Viktor Orlov. His desperate search for the truth will take him from London to Amsterdam and eventually to Geneva, where a private intelligence service controlled by a childhood friend of the Russian president is using KGB-style "active measures" to undermine the West from within. Known as the Haydn Group, the unit is plotting an unspeakable act of violence that will plunge an already divided America into chaos and leave Russia unchallenged. Only Gabriel Allon, with the help of a brilliant young woman employed by the world's dirtiest bank, can stop it. Elegant and sophisticated, provocative and daring, The Cellist explores one of the preeminent threats facing the West today—the corrupting influence of dirty money wielded by a revanchist and reckless Russia. It is at once a novel of hope and a stark warning about the fragile state of democracy.
by Michael Pollan
Out Now!
 
Pollan dives deep into three plant drug––opium, caffeine, and mescaline––and throws the fundamental strangeness, and arbitrariness, of our thinking about them into sharp relief. Exploring and participating in the cultures that have grown up around these drugs while consuming (or, in the case of caffeine, trying not to consume) them, Pollan reckons with the powerful human attraction to psychoactive plants. Why do we go to such great lengths to seek these shifts in consciousness, and then why do we fence that universal desire with laws and customs and fraught feelings? In this unique blend of history, science, and memoir, as well as participatory journalism, Pollan examines and experiences these plants from several very different angles and contexts, and shines a fresh light on a subject that is all too often treated reductively––as a drug, whether licit or illicit. But that is one of the least interesting things you can say about these plants, Pollan shows, for when we take them into our bodies and let them change our minds, we are engaging with nature in one of the most profound ways we can.
Anxious People (Paperback)
by Fredrik Backman
Out Now!
 
Looking at real estate isn't usually a life-or-death situation, but an apartment open house becomes just that when a failed bank robber bursts in and takes a group of strangers hostage. Each of the captives carries a lifetime of grievances, hurts, secrets, and passions that are ready to boil over. None of them is entirely who they appear to be. And all of them—the bank robber included—desperately crave some sort of rescue. As the authorities and the media surround the premises, these reluctant allies will reveal surprising truths about themselves and set in motion a chain of events so unexpected that even they can hardly explain what happens next. Proving once again that Backman is "a master of writing delightful, insightful, soulful, character-driven narratives" (USA TODAY), Anxious People "captures the messy essence of being human….It's clever and affecting, as likely to make you laugh out loud as it is to make you cry" (TheWashington Post). This "endlessly entertaining mood-booster" (Real Simple) is proof that the enduring power of friendship, forgiveness, and hope can save us—even in the most anxious of times.
Migrations (Paperback)
by Charlotte McConaghy
Out Now!
 
Franny Stone has always been the kind of woman who is able to love but unable to stay. Leaving behind everything but her research gear, she arrives in Greenland with a singular purpose: to follow the last Arctic terns in the world on what might be their final migration to Antarctica. Franny talks her way onto a fishing boat, and she and the crew set sail, traveling ever further from shore and safety. But as Franny's history begins to unspool—a passionate love affair, an absent family, a devastating crime—it becomes clear that she is chasing more than just the birds. When Franny's dark secrets catch up with her, how much is she willing to risk for one more chance at redemption? Epic and intimate, heartbreaking and galvanizing, Charlotte McConaghy's Migrations is an ode to a disappearing world and a breathtaking page-turner about the possibility of hope against all odds.
by Yaa Gyasi
Out Now!
 
Gifty is a sixth-year PhD candidate in neuroscience at the Stanford University School of Medicine studying reward-seeking behavior in mice and the neural circuits of depression and addiction. Her brother, Nana, was a gifted high school athlete who died of a heroin overdose after an ankle injury left him hooked on OxyContin. Her suicidal mother is living in her bed. Gifty is determined to discover the scientific basis for the suffering she sees all around her. But even as she turns to the hard sciences to unlock the mystery of her family's loss, she finds herself hungering for her childhood faith and grappling with the evangelical church in which she was raised, whose promise of salvation remains as tantalizing as it is elusive.
by Louise Penny
Out Now!
 
On their first night in Paris, the Gamaches gather as a family for a bistro dinner with Armand's godfather, the billionaire Stephen Horowitz. Walking home together after the meal, they watch in horror as Stephen is knocked down and critically injured in what Gamache knows is no accident, but a deliberate attempt on the elderly man’s life. When a strange key is found in Stephen's possession it sends Armand, his wife Reine-Marie, and his former second-in-command at the Sûreté, Jean-Guy Beauvoir, from the top of the Tour d'Eiffel, to the bowels of the Paris Archives, from luxury hotels to odd, coded, works of art. It sends them deep into the secrets Armand's godfather has kept for decades. A gruesome discovery in Stephen’s Paris apartment makes it clear the secrets are more rancid, the danger far greater and more imminent, than they realized. Soon the whole family is caught up in a web of lies and deceit. In order to find the truth, Gamache will have to decide whether he can trust his friends, his colleagues, his instincts, his own past. His own family. For even the City of Light casts long shadows. And in that darkness devils hide.
by Robin DiAngelo
Out Now!
 
In White Fragility, Robin DiAngelo explained how racism is a system into which all white people are socialized and challenged the belief that racism is a simple matter of good people versus bad. DiAngelo also made a provocative claim: white progressives cause the most daily harm to people of color. In Nice Racism, her follow-up work, she explains how they do so. Drawing on her background as a sociologist and over 25 years working as an anti-racist educator, she picks up where White Fragility left off and moves the conversation forward. Writing directly to white people as a white person, DiAngelo identifies many common white racial patterns and breaks down how well-intentioned white people unknowingly perpetuate racial harm. Nice Racism is an essential work for any white person who recognizes the existence of systemic racism and white supremacy and wants to take steps to align their values with their actual practice. BIPOC readers may also find the "insiders" perspective useful for navigating whiteness.
 
Upcoming Releases
The City We Became (Paperback)
by N.K. Jemisin
Out: July 27
 
In Manhattan, a young grad student gets off the train and realizes he doesn't remember who he is, where he's from, or even his own name. But he can sense the beating heart of the city, see its history, and feel its power. In the Bronx, a Lenape gallery director discovers strange graffiti scattered throughout the city, so beautiful and powerful it's as if the paint is literally calling to her. In Brooklyn, a politician and mother finds she can hear the songs of her city, pulsing to the beat of her Louboutin heels. And they're not the only ones. Every great city has a soul. Some are ancient as myths, and others are as new and destructive as children. New York? She's got six.
by Courtney Gould
Out: August 3
 
Pre-order a signed and personalized copy! In Gould's thrilling YA debut, something is wrong in Snakebite, Oregon. Teenagers are disappearing, some turning up dead, the weather isn't normal, and all fingers point to TV's most popular ghost hunters who have just come to town. Logan Ortiz-Woodley, daughter of TV's ParaSpectors, has never been to Snakebite before. But the moment she and her dads arrive, she starts to get the feeling that there's more than ghosts plaguing this small town. Ashley Barton's boyfriend was the first teen to go missing, and she's felt his ghost following her ever since. Although everyone shuns the Ortiz-Woodleys, the mysterious Logan may be the only person who can help Ashley get some answers. When Ashley and Logan team up to figure out who—or what—is haunting Snakebite, their investigation reveals truths about the town, their families, and themselves that neither of them are ready for. As the danger intensifies, they realize that their growing feelings for each other could be a light in the darkness.
by Louise Penny
Out: August 24
 
You're a coward. Time and again, as the New Year approaches, that charge is leveled against Armand Gamache. It starts innocently enough. While the residents of the Québec village of Three Pines take advantage of the deep snow to ski and toboggan, to drink hot chocolate in the bistro and share meals together, the Chief Inspector finds his holiday with his family interrupted by a simple request. He's asked to provide security for what promises to be a non-event. A visiting Professor of Statistics will be giving a lecture at the nearby university. While he is perplexed as to why the head of homicide for the Sûreté du Québec would be assigned this task, it sounds easy enough. That is until Gamache starts looking into Professor Abigail Robinson and discovers an agenda so repulsive he begs the university to cancel the lecture. They refuse, citing academic freedom, and accuse Gamache of censorship and intellectual cowardice. Before long, Professor Robinson's views start seeping into conversations. Spreading and infecting. So that truth and fact, reality and delusion are so confused it's near impossible to tell them apart. Discussions become debates, debates become arguments, which turn into fights. As sides are declared, a madness takes hold. Abigail Robinson promises that, if they follow her, ça va bien aller. All will be well. But not, Gamache and his team know, for everyone. When a murder is committed it falls to Armand Gamache, his second-in-command Jean-Guy Beauvoir, and their team to investigate the crime as well as this extraordinary popular delusion. And the madness of crowds.
A Whale of the Wild (Paperback)
by Rosanne Parry and Lindsay Moore
Out: August 31
 
A young orca whale must lead her brother on a tumultuous journey to be reunited with their pod. This gorgeously illustrated animal adventure novel explores family bonds, survival, global warming, and a changing seascape. Includes information about orcas and their habitats. For Vega and her family, salmon is life. And Vega is learning to be a salmon finder, preparing for the day when she will be her family’s matriarch. But then she and her brother Deneb are separated from their pod when a devastating earthquake and tsunami render the seascape unrecognizable. Vega must use every skill she has to lead her brother back to their family. The young orcas face a shark attack, hunger, the deep ocean, and polluted waters on their journey. Will Vega become the leader she’s destined to be? A Whale of the Wild weaves a heart-stopping tale of survival with impeccable research on a delicate ecosystem and threats to marine life. New York Times-bestselling author Rosanne Parry’s fluid writing and Lindsay Moore's stunning artwork bring the Salish Sea and its inhabitants to vivid life. An excellent read-aloud and read-alone, this companion to A Wolf Called Wander will captivate fans of The One and Only Ivan and Pax.
by Colson Whitehead
Out: September 14
 
From the two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Underground Railroad and The Nickel Boys, a gloriously entertaining novel of heists, shakedowns, and rip-offs set in Harlem in the 1960s. Ray Carney was only slightly bent when it came to being crooked. To his customers and neighbors on 125th street, Carney is an upstanding salesman of reasonably priced furniture, making a decent life for himself and his family. He and his wife Elizabeth are expecting their second child, and if her parents on Striver's Row don't approve of him or their cramped apartment across from the subway tracks, it's still home. Few people know he descends from a line of uptown hoods and crooks, and that his façade of normalcy has more than a few cracks in it. Cash is tight, especially with all those installment-plan sofas, so if his cousin Freddie occasionally drops off the odd ring or necklace, Ray doesn't ask where it comes from. He knows a discreet jeweler downtown who doesn't ask questions, either. Then Freddie falls in with a crew who plan to rob the Hotel Theresa––the Waldorf of Harlem––and volunteers Ray's services as the fence. The heist doesn't go as planned; they rarely do. Now Ray has a new clientele, one made up of shady cops, vicious local gangsters, two-bit pornographers, and other assorted Harlem lowlifes. Can Ray avoid getting killed, save his cousin, and grab his share of the big score, all while maintaining his reputation as the go-to source for all your quality home furniture needs?
by Amanda Gorman & Loren Long
Out: September 21
 
A lyrical picture book debut from presidential inaugural poet Amanda Gorman and illustrator Loren Long.
 
"I can hear change humming
In its loudest, proudest song.
I don't fear change coming,
And so I sing along."
 
In this stirring, much-anticipated picture book by poet and activist Amanda Gorman, anything is possible when our voices join together. As a young girl leads a cast of characters on a musical journey, they learn that they have the power to make changes—big or small—in the world, in their communities, and in most importantly, in themselves. With lyrical text and rhythmic illustrations that build to a dazzling crescendo by #1 New York Times bestselling illustrator Loren Long, Change Sings is a triumphant call to action for everyone to use their abilities to make a difference.
by Richard Powers
Out: September 21
 
A heartrending new novel from the Pulitzer Prize–winning author of The Overstory. The astrobiologist Theo Byrne searches for life throughout the cosmos while single-handedly raising his unusual nine-year-old, Robin, following the death of his wife. Robin is a warm, kind boy who spends hours painting elaborate pictures of endangered animals. He's also about to be expelled from third grade for smashing his friend in the face. As his son grows more troubled, Theo hopes to keep him off psychoactive drugs. He learns of an experimental neurofeedback treatment to bolster Robin's emotional control, one that involves training the boy on the recorded patterns of his mother's brain. With its soaring descriptions of the natural world, its tantalizing vision of life beyond, and its account of a father and son's ferocious love, Bewilderment marks Richard Powerss most intimate and moving novel. At its heart lies the question: How can we tell our children the truth about this beautiful, imperiled planet?
by Anthony Doerr
Out: September 28
 
From the Pulitzer Prize–winning author of All the Light We Cannot See comes a triumph of imagination and compassion, a soaring novel about children on the cusp of adulthood in a broken world, who find resilience, hope, and story. The heroes of Cloud Cuckoo Land are trying to figure out the world around them: Anna and Omeir, on opposite sides of the formidable city walls during the 1453 siege of Constantinople; teenage idealist Seymour in an attack on a public library in present day Idaho; and Konstance, on an interstellar ship bound for an exoplanet, decades from now. Like Marie-Laure and Werner in All the Light We Cannot See, Anna, Omeir, Seymour, and Konstance are dreamers and outsiders who find resourcefulness and hope in the midst of peril. An ancient text—the story of Aethon, who longs to be turned into a bird so that he can fly to a utopian paradise in the sky—provides solace and mystery to these unforgettable characters. Doerr has created a tapestry of times and places that reflects our vast interconnectedness—with other species, with each other, with those who lived before us and those who will be here after we’re gone. Dedicated to "the librarians then, now, and in the years to come," Cloud Cuckoo Land is a hauntingly beautiful and redemptive novel about stewardship—of the book, of the Earth, of the human heart.
by Amor Towles
Out: October 5
 
The author of A Gentleman in Moscow and Rules of Civility and master of absorbing, sophisticated fiction returns with a stylish and propulsive novel set in 1950s America. In June, 1954, eighteen-year-old Emmett Watson is driven home to Nebraska by the warden of the juvenile work farm where he has just served fifteen months for involuntary manslaughter. His mother long gone, his father recently deceased, and the family farm foreclosed upon by the bank, Emmett's intention is to pick up his eight-year-old brother, Billy, and head to California where they can start their lives anew. But when the warden drives away, Emmett discovers that two friends from the work farm have hidden themselves in the trunk of the warden's car. Together, they have hatched an altogether different plan for Emmett's future, one that will take them all on a fateful journey in the opposite direction—to the City of New York. Spanning just ten days and told from multiple points of view, Towles's third novel will satisfy fans of his multi-layered literary styling while providing them an array of new and richly imagined settings, characters, and themes.
by Dave Eggers
Out: October 5
 
This hardcover edition is available exclusively through independent bookstores and the book's independent, nonprofit publisher, McSweeney's. When the world's largest search engine/social media company, the Circle, merges with the planet's dominant e-commerce site, it creates the richest and most dangerous––and, oddly enough, most beloved––monopoly ever known: the Every. Delaney Wells is an unlikely new hire. A former forest ranger and unwavering tech skeptic, she charms her way into an entry-level job with one goal in mind: to take down the company from within. With her compatriot, the not-at-all-ambitious Wes Kavakian, they look for the company's weaknesses, hoping to free humanity from all-encompassing surveillance and the emoji-driven infantilization of the species. But does anyone want what Delaney is fighting to save? Does humanity truly want to be free? Studded with unforgettable characters and lacerating set pieces, The Every blends satire and terror, while keeping the reader in breathless suspense about the fate of the company––and the human animal.
by Louise Penny and Hillary Rodham Clinton
Out: October 12
 
State of Terror is a unique and utterly compelling international thriller cowritten by Hillary Rodham Clinton, the 67th secretary of state, and multiple award-winning author Louise Penny. There is no love lost between the president of the United States and Ellen Adams, his new secretary of state. But it's a canny move on the part of the president. With this appointment, he silences one of his harshest critics, since taking the job means Adams must step down as head of her multinational media conglomerate. As the new president addresses Congress for the first time, with Secretary Adams in attendance, Anahita Dahir, a young foreign service officer (FSO) on the Pakistan desk at the State Department, receives a baffling text from an anonymous source. Too late, she realizes the message was a hastily coded warning. What begins as a series of apparent terrorist attacks is revealed to be the beginning of an international chess game involving the volatile and Byzantine politics of Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Iran; the race to develop nuclear weapons in the region; the Russian mob; a burgeoning rogue terrorist organization; and an American government set back on its heels in the international arena. As the horrifying scale of the threat becomes clear, Secretary Adams and her team realize it has been carefully planned to take advantage of four years of an American government out of touch with international affairs, out of practice with diplomacy, and out of power in the places where it counts the most. To defeat such an intricate, carefully constructed conspiracy, it will take the skills of a unique team: a passionate young FSO; a dedicated journalist; and a smart, determined, but as yet untested new secretary of state.
 
Staff Reviews
by Becky Chambers
reviewed by Alex
 
It only took a few pages of Psalm for the Wild Built to make me fall asleep every night, and I’m convinced that’s the best way to read it. It's like ginger root after a spicy tuna roll, but think more like purging the taste of electronics and anxieties from your palate. Dex, an agendered tea monk in a post-electronic world where robots accidentally gained awareness and retreated to the wilderness, travels around Panga in search of a purpose. There has been no interaction between humans and robots for centuries. Things get interesting for Dex when they suddenly abandon their tea monk calling and encounter a robot in the wilds, straight out of what has become folklore. The two of them seek out to learn something from the other. It's difficult not to read these interactions as commentary on capitalism. For Dex, who has ostensibly been removed from our contemporary woes, a chance encounter with a robot from the "Factory Era" unearths the lingering trauma of capitalism. At its core Chambers is offering a hopeful picture of what a post-capitalist society might look like, and suggests that an antidote may be living without a purpose at all.
by Dana Spiotta
reviewed by Michael
 
In Wayward, the author of Eat the Document once again deftly mixes the personal and the political. In the post-election malaise of late 2016, fifty-something Samantha Raymond leaves her stagnant marriage to purchase her dream home: an old fixer-upper in Syracuse. Sam is forced to balance her liberal ideals with the very real homeless population in her new neighborhood. She is also deeply worried about her mother's failing health. Meanwhile, Sam's teenage daughter, Ally, refuses to reply to her mother's texts. Feeling both abandoned and liberated by Sam's departure, Ally deepens her relationship with an older man. Sam and Ally remain incommunicado until a series of escalations throws mother and daughter back together again. Both women are strong and individual characters. Spiotta has painted a highly nuanced portrait of a contemporary family on the brink, and her poignant observations on politics, social issues, middle class, midlife, and love provide an added spark to Wayward that only Dana Spiotta could ignite.
 
Annie Bloom's Staff Favorites
 
(The text for each book below is supplied by the publisher and isn't a staff-penned review.)
by Natsuko Imamura
 
Almost every afternoon, the Woman in the Purple Skirt sits on the same park bench, where she eats a cream bun while the local children make a game of trying to get her attention. Unbeknownst to her, she is being watched––by the Woman in the Yellow Cardigan, who is always perched just out of sight, monitoring which buses she takes, what she eats, whom she speaks to. From a distance, the Woman in the Purple Skirt looks like a schoolgirl, but there are age spots on her face, and her hair is dry and stiff. She is single, she lives in a small apartment, and she is short on money––just like the Woman in the Yellow Cardigan, who lures her to a job as a housekeeper at a hotel, where she too is a housekeeper. Soon, the Woman in the Purple Skirt is having an affair with the boss and all eyes are on her. But no one knows or cares about the Woman in the Yellow Cardigan. That's the difference between her and the Woman in the Purple Skirt. Studiously deadpan and chillingly voyeuristic, The Woman in the Purple Skirt explores envy, loneliness, power dynamics, and the vulnerability of unmarried women in a taut, suspenseful narrative about the sometimes desperate desire to be seen.
Hollow (Paperback)
by Brian Catling
 
From the acclaimed author of the Vorrh Trilogy comes an epic odyssey following a group of mercenaries hired to escort a divine oracle on a long journey amidst a war between the living and the dead. Sheltering beneath Das Kagel, the cloud-scraping structure rumored to be the Tower of Babel, the sacred Monastery of the Eastern Gate descends into bedlam. Their ancient oracle, Quite Testiyont––whose prophesies helped protect the church––has died, leaving the monks vulnerable to the war raging between the living and the dead. Tasked by the High Church to deliver a new oracle, Barry Follett and his group of hired mercenaries are forced to confront wicked giants and dangerous sirens on their mission, keeping the divine creature alive by feeding it marrow and confessing their darkest sins. But as Follett and his men carve their way through the treacherous landscape, the world around them spirals deeper into chaos. Dominic, a young monk who has mysteriously lost his voice, makes a pilgrimage to see surreal paintings, believing they reveal the empire's fate; a local woman called Mad Meg hopes to free and vindicate her jailed son and becomes the leader of the most unexpected revolution; and the abbot of the monastery, influential as he is, seeks to gain even more power in this world and the next. Rich with action and fantastic creatures, Hollow ushers the reader through a world of ruin where holy secrets are unearthed, art mirrors life through a glass darkly, and death looms over everything. It is B. Catling's most accomplished and gripping tale yet.
by Terry Miles
 
A deadly underground game might just be altering reality itself in this all-new adventure set in the world of the hit Rabbits podcast. It's an average work day. You've been wrapped up in a task, and you check the clock when you come up for air—4:44 p.m. You check your email, and 44 unread messages have built up. With a shock, you realize the date is April 4—4/4. And when you get in your car to drive home, your odometer reads 44,444. Coincidence? Or have you just seen the edge of a rabbit hole? Rabbits is a mysterious alternate reality game so vast it uses the entire world as its canvas. Since the game started in 1959, ten iterations have appeared and nine winners have been declared. The identities of these winners are unknown. So is their reward, which is whispered to be NSA or CIA recruitment, vast wealth, immortality, or perhaps even the key to the secrets of the universe itself. But the deeper you get, the more dangerous the game becomes. Players have died in the past—and the body count is rising. And now the eleventh round is about to begin. Enter K—a Rabbits obsessive who has been trying to find a way into the game for years. That path opens when K is approached by billionaire Alan Scarpio, rumored to be the winner of the sixth iteration. Scarpio says that something has gone wrong with the game and that K needs to fix it before Eleven starts, or the whole world will pay the price. Five days later, Scarpio is declared missing. Two weeks after that, K blows the deadline: Eleven begins. And suddenly, the fate of the entire universe is at stake.
Hamnet (Paperback)
by Maggie O’Farrell
 
England, 1580: The Black Death creeps across the land, an ever-present threat, infecting the healthy, the sick, the old and the young alike. The end of days is near, but life always goes on. A young Latin tutor—penniless and bullied by a violent father—falls in love with an extraordinary, eccentric young woman. Agnes is a wild creature who walks her family's land with a falcon on her glove and is known throughout the countryside for her unusual gifts as a healer, understanding plants and potions better than she does people. Once she settles with her husband on Henley Street in Stratford-upon-Avon, she becomes a fiercely protective mother and a steadfast, centrifugal force in the life of her young husband, whose career on the London stage is just taking off when his beloved young son succumbs to sudden fever.
A Private Cathedral (Paperback)
by James Lee Burke
 
The Shondell and Balangie families are longtime enemies in the New Iberia criminal underworld and show each other no mercy. Yet their youngest heirs, Johnny Shondell and Isolde Balangie, rock and roll-musician teenagers with magical voices, have fallen in love and run away after Isolde was given as a sex slave to Johnny's uncle. As he seeks to uncover why, Detective Dave Robicheaux gets too close to both Isolde's mother and the mistress of her father, a venomous New Orleans mafioso whose jealousy has no bounds. In retribution, he hires a mysterious assassin to go after Robicheaux and his longtime partner, Clete Purcel. This hitman is unlike any the "Bobbsey Twins from Homicide" have ever faced. He has the ability to induce horrifying hallucinations and travels on a menacing ghost ship that materializes without warning. In order to defeat him and rescue Johnny and Isolde, Robicheaux will have to overcome the demons that have tormented him throughout his adult life—alcoholism, specters from combat in Vietnam, and painful memories of women to whom he opened his heart only to see killed. A Private Cathedral, James Lee Burke's fortieth book, is his most powerful tale, one that will captivate readers—mixing crime, romance, mythology, horror, and science fiction to produce a thrilling story about the all-consuming, all-conquering power of love.
Squeeze Me (Paperback)
by Carl Hiaasen
 
At the height of Palm Beach's charity ball season, Kiki Pew Fitzsimmons, a prominent member of geriatric high society, suddenly vanishes during a swank gala. Kiki Pew was a founding member of the Potussies, a group of women dedicated to supporting the President, who spends half the year at the "Winter White House" just down the road. Meanwhile, Angie Armstrong, wildlife wrangler extraordinaire, is called to the island to deal with a monster-sized Burmese python that has taken residency in a tree. But the President is focused on the disappearance of Kiki Pew. Never one to miss an opportunity to play to his base, he immediately declares her a victim of rampaging immigrant hordes. This, it turns out, is far from the truth, which now lies in the middle of the road, where a bizarre discovery brings the First Lady's motorcade to a grinding halt. Irreverent, ingenious, and uproariously entertaining, Squeeze Me perfectly captures the absurdity of our times.
A Deadly Education (Paperback)
by Naomi Novik
 
Novik creates a school bursting with magic like you've never seen before, and a heroine for the ages––a character so sharply realized and so richly nuanced that she will live on in hearts and minds for generations to come. "I decided that Orion Lake needed to die after the second time he saved my life. Everyone loves Orion Lake. Everyone else, that is. Far as I'm concerned, he can keep his flashy combat magic to himself. I'm not joining his pack of adoring fans. I don't need help surviving the Scholomance, even if they do. Forget the hordes of monsters and cursed artifacts, I'm probably the most dangerous thing in the place. Just give me a chance and I'll level mountains and kill untold millions, make myself the dark queen of the world. At least, that's what the world expects. Most of the other students in here would be delighted if Orion killed me like one more evil thing that's crawled out of the drains. Sometimes I think they want me to turn into the evil witch they assume I am. The school certainly does. But the Scholomance isn't getting what it wants from me. And neither is Orion Lake. I may not be anyone's idea of the shining hero, but I'm going to make it out of this place alive, and I'm not going to slaughter thousands to do it, either. Although I'm giving serious consideration to just one."
Blacktop Wasteland (Paperback)
by S. A. Cosby
 
A husband, a father, a son, a business owner. And the best getaway driver east of the Mississippi. Beauregard "Bug" Montage is an honest mechanic, a loving husband, and a hard-working dad. Bug knows there’s no future in the man he used to be: known from the hills of North Carolina to the beaches of Florida as the best wheelman on the East Coast. He thought he'd left all that behind him, but as his carefully built new life begins to crumble, he finds himself drawn inexorably back into a world of blood and bullets. When a smooth-talking former associate comes calling with a can't-miss jewelry store heist, Bug feels he has no choice but to get back in the driver's seat. And Bug is at his best where the scent of gasoline mixes with the smell of fear. Haunted by the ghost of who he used to be and the father who disappeared when he needed him most, Bug must find a way to navigate this blacktop wasteland...or die trying.
 
New for Kids & Teens
by Audrey Sauble
Ages: 4-8
 
Discover flat rocks, round rocks, sharp rocks, and even hexagon-shaped rocks in Can a Rock Grow?—and explore the shapes rocks make as they grow and break with this entertaining and educational picture book. This book is a simple, easy-to-read introduction to different types of rocks, as well as the rock cycle. The back matter includes a few key geology words, as well as a scavenger hunt. This is the third book in the Early Science Series, following Can a Tree Be Blue? and Can a Spider Be Fluffy?
by Alice Schertle and Jill McElmurry
Ages: 4-7
 
Little Blue Truck and his good friend Toad are excited to meet a bright yellow school bus on the road. They see all the little animals lined up in the school bus's many windows, and Blue wishes he could be a school bus too. What a fun job—but much too big for a little pickup like Blue. Or is it? When somebody misses the bus, it's up to Blue to get his friend to school on time. Beep! Beep! Vroom! Also enjoy Blue's bedtime ride in Good Night, Little Blue Truck and his trip to the city in Little Blue Truck Leads the Way.
by Sophie Gilmore
Ages: 4-8
 
When five animal friends—and one cunning snake—brainstorm ideas about something absolutely terrific to do, they learn about friendship, cooperation, and compromise. Sophie Gilmore's hilarious picture book will be devoured by fans of Ryan T. Higgins's We Don't Eat Our Classmates and Jon Klassen's This Is Not My Hat. Mandrill, Owl, Badger, Turtle, and Anteater want to do something terrific together. Anteater suggests climbing—but that is not terrific for them all. Mandrill suggests hanging upside down, but that is not terrific for them all, either. And so it goes, until Snake slithers into the group and nearly upends the whole lovely afternoon. Eventually, with open minds, patience, and cooperation—and a wickedly delightful twist—the five friends finally find a shared passion. Sophie Gilmore's gorgeous artwork is full of rich details, and she introduces five terrific—and clever—animal characters who readers will cheer for in the end. Terrific! is an irresistible choice for young readers and anyone who’s ever spent an afternoon just waiting for that terrific idea to come along.
by William Ritter
Ages: 8-12
 
The third adventure in the beloved fantasy series full of folklore and mayhem, from the creator of Jackaby. Brothers Cole and Tinn—one human, one a goblin changeling—are determined to solve a mystery almost as old as they are: What happened to their long-missing father? Joseph Burton vanished without a trace, leaving the baby boys' mother to raise them alone. Some say he abandoned his family, others that he met foul play looking for a way to get rid of the changeling imposter. Cole is determined to finally push through the rumors and learn his father's fate. With the help of their friends—Evie, expert on the creatures of the Wild Wood, and Fable, the indomitable half human, half fairy—Tinn and Cole set out on a dangerous quest to the deepest, most deadly limits of the Wild Wood. Meanwhile a shudder runs through the forest. Increasingly powerful earthquakes shake the land, sinkholes form, and the spriggans, trolls, and other creatures along their path speak of an ancient evil on the rise.
by Melissa Wiley
Ages: 8-12
 
A feisty girl from a family of ranchers lands a job as a daredevil stunt girl in the early days of silent film. Pearl lives on a ranch where her chores include collecting eggs and feeding ornery ostriches. She has three older brothers, who don't coddle her at all. And she knows a thing or two about horses, too. One day, Pearl's brothers get cushy jobs doing stunts for this new form of entertainment called "moving pictures." They're the Daredevil Donnelly Brothers, a Death-Defying Cowboy Trio. Before she knows it, Pearl has stumbled into being a stunt girl herself--and dreams of becoming a star. The only problem is, her mother has no idea what she's up to. And let's just say she wouldn't be too happy to find out that Pearl's been jumping out of burning buildings in her spare time. Filled with action, humor, and heart––not to mention those pesky ostriches––The Nerviest Girl in the World introduces a spunky heroine whose adventures will have kids on the edge of their seats and whose sense of humor will have them laughing until the very last line. Signing and personalization available! Please mention any requests in the order comments field at checkout.
by Kara LaReau and Ryan Andrews
Ages: 8-12
 
Could Bert really be a zombie cat? Two friends put their brains together to find out in a wry new mystery series. While helping her best friend, Danny, film his latest horror flick, Mellie discovers a scraggly cat behind a dumpster outside the YummCo Foods factory. Mellie names the stray Bert and hides him in her room, knowing her parents won't let her keep him. But soon Bert has decapitated all her stuffed animals, and before long he is leaving the headless corpses of birds and mice as gifts for her. Danny is convinced the cat is a zombie, living on the brains of his victims. But is that what is really going on? Award-winning author Kara LaReau lets loose a fresh and sharply funny new mystery series, with an irresistible touch of the macabre. Fans of creepy stories and animal lovers alike will devour this fast-moving first episode in one gulp.
by Rainbow Rowell
Ages: 15 & Up
 
Rowell's epic fantasy, the Simon Snow trilogy, concludes with Any Way the Wind Blows. In Carry On, Simon Snow and his friends realized that everything they thought they understood about the world might be wrong. And in Wayward Son, they wondered whether everything they understood about themselves might be wrong. In Any Way the Wind Blows, Simon and Baz and Penelope and Agatha have to decide how to move forward. For Simon, that means deciding whether he still wants to be part of the World of Mages—and if he doesn't, what does that mean for his relationship with Baz? Meanwhile Baz is bouncing between two family crises and not finding any time to talk to anyone about his newfound vampire knowledge. Penelope would love to help, but she's smuggled an American Normal into London, and now she isn't sure what to do with him. And Agatha? Well, Agatha Wellbelove has had enough. Any Way the Wind Blows takes the gang back to England, back to Watford, and back to their families for their longest and most emotionally wrenching adventure yet. This book is a finale. It tells secrets and answers questions and lays ghosts to rest.
by Michelle Ruiz Keil
Ages: 14 & Up
 
Inspired by the Greek myth of Iphigenia and the Grimm fairy tale "Brother and Sister," Michelle Ruiz Keil's second novel follows two siblings torn apart and struggling to find each other in early '90s Portland. All her life, seventeen-year-old Iph has protected her sensitive younger brother, Orr. But this summer, with their mother gone at an artist residency, their father decides it's time for fifteen-year-old Orr to toughen up at a wilderness boot camp. When their father brings Iph to a work gala in downtown Portland and breaks the news, Orr has already been sent away against his will. Furious at her father's betrayal, Iph storms off and gets lost in the maze of Old Town. Enter George, a queer Robin Hood who swoops in on a bicycle, bow and arrow at the ready, offering Iph a place to hide out while she tracks down Orr. Orr, in the meantime, has escaped the camp and fallen in with The Furies, an all-girl punk band, and moves into the coat closet of their ramshackle pink house. In their first summer apart, Iph and Orr must learn to navigate their respective new spaces of music, romance, and sex-work activism—and find each other before a fantastical transformation fractures their family forever. Told through a lens of magical realism and steeped in myth, Summer in the City of Roses is a dazzling tale about the pain and beauty of growing up.
 
August to August Calendars
 
Printed in the USA on 100% post-consumer recycled paper, with brightly colored covers and a sturdy wire-o binding.
 
The 2021-2022 edition is available in Sky, Lilac, Cherry, Lime, and Licorice.
 
Please specify your color preferences in your checkout comments.
 
Author Readings
 
In-person events return to Annie Bloom's in September!
No Witness
Tuesday, September 7, 7pm
 
Annie Bloom's welcomes back Portland author Warren Easley for his latest Cal Claxton mystery, No Witness. Claxton hires a young, undocumented man as an assistant, hoping to give him an opportunity to create more stability for himself and his family. Timoteo Fuentes is a bright, hardworking student by day and Cal's legal clerk by night, juggling both roles with determination and grit. When one of Timoteo's family members is brutally murdered, can Cal and Timoteo untangle the web of deceit or will they become victims themselves?
Poetry Reading
Thursday, September 16, 7pm
 
Annie Bloom's welcomes Oregon poets Brittney Corrigan and David J. S. Pickering for a reading from their new poetry collections from Airlie Press. Corrigan's Daughters reimagines characters from mythology, folklore, fairy tales, and pop culture from the perspective of their daughters. Pickering's Jesus Comes to Me as Judy Garland explores themes of sexual orientation, spirituality, family, and aging, often using smart humor and sharp observation.
 
In Case You Missed it
Check out Annie Bloom's YouTube channel! This is where you can watch previous livestream author events that you might have missed, like Kim Stafford, John Brehm, Jacqueline Keeler, Jutta Donath, Cindy Baldwin, Joshua Henkin & Tom Barbash, Megan Galbraith & Liz Prato, Dana Spiotta, Kelly Williams Brown, and many others!
 
Gift Cards
Both E-gift cards and physical gift cards are available in any amount, from $5 to $200. The e-gift card will be emailed to the recipient and can be used online at our website. Our traditional Molly Bloom gift cards can be mailed or picked up at the store.
 
Donate to Street Books
 
Street Books is a bicycle-powered mobile library, serving people who live outside. Street Books strives to empower people on the streets through access to literature and create a community of support for people living outside, through a shared love of books. Annie Bloom's Books is partnering with Street Books by offering 10% off books purchased for their wish list. To view that wish list and to find out more about Street Books, please see: Our Street Books Page
 
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Kobo eBooks
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Annie Bloom's Books | 503-246-0053 | 7834 SW Capitol Hwy, Portland, OR 97219
 
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